School starts for us the week of August 29th, so of course I get tagged for jury duty for that Monday. The court system of Worcester County must really like me because I also went for jury duty almost 6 years ago when I was pregnant with The Peanut. Needless to say, school will be delayed by a day. I doubt The Peanut will complain too much -- I think on one level, she's ready to get back to school and the routine it offers her. I know she thinks she likes having time on her hands, but I find that her attitude gets pretty bad after awhile -- especially after a couple of days of rain. Our schedule should still allow for plenty of outside time on the nice days. I won't keep her chained to her school table all day...
This year marks Kindergarten for The Peanut. Last year, I was perfectly content to share the schooling with our nanny because I considered it a "gravy" year. Technically, this year is another "gravy" year, but since I had to actually call the school and tell them she wouldn't be showing up for Kindergarten orientation, it feels more official. (In Massachusetts, a parent doesn't have to file paperwork to homeschool until the child turns 6... The Peanut is 5.) So I feel like the burden of educating The Peanut should fall much more squarely on my shoulders (and my husband's as his schedule allows). Please don't get me wrong -- the nanny has done a wonderful job helping me -- lots of great ideas and a different perspective. I think for as long as she sits for The Peanut, she will always help -- just not as much as this past year. This transition is made easier (or is being forced, depending on how you want to look at it) by her need to cut back her hours because of her course load. I really am looking forward to taking on the vast majority of the school work -- the last couple of months have been spent prepping for this year and I'm really excited about what's coming up.
This year also marks the start of Shrewsbury Arts Alive. The rumors of its death were greatly exaggerated. It is in fact kicking off under Pakachoag Music School's umbrella. In reality, the church voting the program down was probably the best thing that could have happened to it. We're starting out with a stronger program selection right out of the gate. I also have a supportive board and some semblance of a budget to work with and a marketing team. And - most importantly - while this is still pretty much my baby, I am backed by a school that's been around for 30 years and a team of individuals who have tons of experience in this realm. How awesome is that? I will continue to see students privately while managing this program and acting as one of the music class instructors.
And this year marks the start of creative homeschooling. We will be one of those families who makes it fit within our crazy schedules. It may mean that The Peanut does not get to sleep until 10am in the morning -- she's much more of a night owl than a morning person. (Sadly, she's not so good at concentrating on school stuff much past dinnertime). And it may mean that at least one day a week, The Peanut will be doing schoolwork with me at the church as I need to be onsite because other instructors will be there -- I won't have much to do beyond turning on some lights and making sure the heat's turned up in the wintertime. Why not find a quiet place to do our lessons? It may also mean that my husband will have to take on some of the responsibility when he gets home in the evening or over the weekend. (I'll just be sure to save the lighter fare for him for both their sakes!)
So many firsts and exciting things this year for us. Juggling it all is a daunting task, but I look forward to the challenge!